--Featuring Such Beloved American Standards as “You’re the Top,”
“I Get a Kick Out of You,” “It’s DeLovely” and “Anything Goes”--
FLUSHING, N.Y, March 9, 2009—When it debuted on Broadway 75 years ago near the height of the Great Depression, Anything Goes provided theater goers with a respite from their real-life struggles. Crowds flocked to see this madcap farce for a record-setting 420 performances, making it one of the longest running musicals of the 1930s. This month, the Department of Drama, Theatre and Dance and the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College will offer today’s audiences the same opportunity to lose themselves in the antics of passengers aboard an ocean liner bound from New York to London. The mix of characters includes a stowaway trying to win the love of a wealthy debutante who’s engaged to an aristocrat; mobsters masquerading as missionaries; an evangelist turned nightclub singer; and a wealthy New York businessman.
Early versions of Anything Goes featured such Hollywood legends as Ethel Merman, Bing Crosby and Frank Sinatra, but the 1987 Broadway revival at the Vivian Beaumont Theatre, which starred Patti Lupone, returned the show to American theatre consciousness. It won the Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Revival, three Drama Desk Awards and three Tony Awards, including Best Revival. The college’s production is based on this version.
“We chose to produce Anything Goes in celebration of the genius of Cole Porter and to give our students the chance to be part of a production that has helped shape the way musical comedies are written,” said director Charles Repole, who chairs the Drama, Theatre and Dance Department. “And a production with a cast this large provides the opportunity for more of our students to experience the thrill of being on stage.”
The Ethel Merman role of nightclub singer Reno Sweeny will be played by Pam Jusino; the role of stowaway Billy Crocker, which Bing Crosby originated in the 1936 film version, will be played by Max Roll. Other leading players are Natasha Barreto as debutante Hope Harcourt; Matthew Dean Wood as mobster Moonface Martin; Christina Bonal as his accomplice Erma; Bella Rozakis as Hope’s mother Mrs. Harcourt; Helio Sepulveda as Lord Zornoza, Hope Harcourt’s fiancé; Robert Ariza as the Purser; Thomas Sauro as businessman Elisha Whitney; and Jeffrey Wise as the Captain.
Performances will take place in the Goldstein Theatre, part of the Kupferberg Center for the Arts, on March 20, 21, 27 and 28 at 8 pm; March 26 at 7 pm; and March 22 and 29 at 3 pm. Tickets are on sale through the Kupferberg Center Box Office at (718) 793-8080. Prices are $15 for performances on Thursday, Friday and Sunday, with a $2 discount for seniors and anyone with a Queens College ID. Tickets are $18 for the Saturday performances and the same $2 discount applies. For more information, call the Queens College Arts Hotline at (718) 997-3075; for directions to Queens College, visit http://www.qc.cuny.edu/about/directions.php.